Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney has tapped one of his longest-serving aides, Beth Myers, to lead his search for a vice presidential running mate, two campaign officials confirmed Monday.
Myers, a lawyer who served as chief of staff during Romney’s term as Massachusetts governor and who managed his 2008 presidential campaign, will oversee the vetting of potential running mates this spring. Myers, who has a long career in Massachusetts politics and has worked with Romney for 10 years, is one of his most trusted confidants and oversaw Romney’s preparation for the Republican primary debates.
Romney made the announcement Monday morning during the taping of an interview with ABC News anchor Diane Sawyer at Boston’s Fenway Park.
“I’ve asked her to be the person who oversees the process of the vice presidential selection and vetting an analysis and so she’s begun that process and is putting together the kinds of things you need to do to vet potential candidates,” Romney told Sawyer. He added: “I think it’s way too early to begin narrowing down who the potential vice presidential nominees might be, but we’re beginning that process.”
Romney said he had no detailed timeline for an announcement, and his wife, Ann, told Sawyer that this past weekend was the first time they “seriously really talked about it.”
“There are some wonderful people out there,” Ann Romney told Sawyer. “So we’re thinking about it now and we haven’t allowed ourselves to go there yet, and I think this is a time when we realize it’s very important and it’s time to think about it.”
The interview will be broadcast Monday night, but ABC reported some details early. Two senior campaign officials confirmed the selection of Myers to The Washington Post.
Myers joined Romney’s orbit in 2002 during his campaign for governor. She was a campaign volunteer and played Romney’s Democratic opponent, Shannon O’Brien, in debate rehearsals. Before then, she served as chief of staff to former Massachusetts state treasurer Joe Malone and worked on a number of other political campaigns.
After Romney lost the 2008 campaign, Myers opened a political consulting firm, Shawmut Group, with fellow Romney advisers Eric Fehrnstrom and Peter Flaherty. Most of their clients are Republicans in New England. One of their highest-profile successes was Scott Brown’s upset in the January 2010 race to fill the Senate seat in Massachusetts left vacant by the death of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D).